Decision-making guidelines

As part of the environmental approvals process for offshore petroleum activities, NOPSEMA is required to make a decision to accept or refuse to accept an environment plan unless the titleholder withdraws that plan from the assessment process.

NOPSEMA recognises that increased transparency in the approvals process and its decision-making on environment plans is necessary to address feedback from titleholders, environmental non-governmental organisations, public engagements, parliamentary processes, and stakeholder consultation.

To address this feedback, NOPSEMA has prepared a series of decision-making guidelines describing how it considers environment plan submissions against the decision-making criteria for acceptance specified in the Environment Regulations. This information complements NOPSEMA’s existing assessment policies and has been prepared as part of an ongoing Strategic Compliance Improvement Program aiming to improve transparency as well as stakeholder engagement.

GL1721 - 10A - Reasonably satisfied - Rev 0 - November 2016 (PDF 200KB) introduces this series of guidelines. The document shows the relationship between the criteria for acceptance and the content requirements of an environment plan. The document also explains how NOPSEMA makes an administrative decision to accept an environment plan where under the Environment Regulations it must reasonably satisfied that the environment plan demonstrates the criteria for acceptance has been met.

The guidelines detail what NOPSEMA takes into account when determining if an environment plan meets each of the criteria for acceptance and are structured to present the basis for NOPSEMA’s decision-making against each criterion. For each criterion, the guidelines describe the regulatory requirement, provide context, and detail specific factors influencing decisions against the criterion and the variable thresholds for a decision. Core concepts provide a quick reference aid for the guidelines.